In today’s gospel, we hear the parable of the talents.
During Jesus’ life – a talent meant a very large sum of money – about 20 years’ worth of wages - so let’s say each talent would be worth about $1 million today.
The English meaning of talent which we are now accustomed to is derived from this parable and first meant a gift from God.READ MORE
Today’s gospel is one of my favorites – it is one of Jesus’ most memorable and most important teachings
In the business world I learned how to develop an elevator speech, which is a quick speech that you can give if you bump into someone and have to give them a quick sales pitch
If a stranger asked me to summarize the Bible teachings in 15 seconds, I would say that God created men and women in his image and told them what they must do be happy on earth and to live forever in heaven – and the 2 primary rules are to love God and love your neighbor. If interested, that 15 second talk could lead to a lot of questions and deeper discussion.READ MORE
First Communion is always a joyous celebration in each parish.
In one parish a family was preparing for the First Communion of their son Kevin. At the time it was the tradition that boys receiving their First Communion all dress in white suits, and for girls to wear a white dress. So, Kevin’s parents took him shopping to find his white suit for his First Communion.
Even though Kevin was only seven years old, he had his own ideas about what it meant to dress formally. His idea of getting dressed up was wearing a clean tee shirt and a pair of jeans without any holes. (Since I’ve been retired, I find that I think a lot like Kevin about what constitutes dressing up).READ MORE
St. Paul says in Romans 5:10, “If, when we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son, how much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by His life.” The CCC #654 explains this further: “The Paschal mystery has two aspects: by His death, Christ liberates us from sin; by His Resurrection, He opens for us the way to a new life. This new life is above all justification that reinstates us in God’s grace, “so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”
A long time ago, I saw a movie, and, in that movie, a man said this to his wife, “There can be no life without you.” It is the most touching statement about human love I have ever heard. There can be no life without you!READ MORE
The fourth Sunday of Lent is called Laetare Sunday. That comes from the Latin “to rejoice or be joyful.” We need Laetare Sunday when we look at all the sadness and suffering in our world today. There is still terrorism, poverty and denial of human rights and religious freedom in the world. Recently, I made a decision to stop reading news about Nigeria because it is very depressing. We need to rejoice in something and today Jesus and St. Paul give us good reason to rejoice.
When we watch football games we’ve all seen that character in the end zone with orange, blue, and purple hair, holding up a sign that reads simply, “John 3:16.’ John 3:16 is probably the best known line from the Bible and it is in our gospel today. John 3:16 says, “For God so love the world that He gave His only Son so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish but have eternal life.” That’s good news!READ MORE
When I was about 18, before I started training for the Priesthood, I dated a girl called Olivia. We dated only for about three months. Olivia is from a very traditional Catholic family. In Nigeria, parents do not allow their kids who are under 20 to date. So Olivia and I dated secretly. But sooner than later, her parents and siblings found out. They found out because she mistakenly left the Valentine card I made for her on her reading table. One of her siblings found it and reported her to mom and dad. Before this incident, Olivia and I were study partner. We were preparing for an examination. So, I lend her one of my books. For some reasons she stopped coming to the library where she and I used to study. There was no cell phone at the time. So I decided to pay her a visit so I could have my book back. When I got to the house and asked to see her, her whole family came out to finally meet this guy who was trying to corrupt Olivia. The looks I got from them was very terrifying. They were like is this the Clement? They spoke in their language and the only thing I could understand was those times they mentioned my name. I was so embarrassed. Well because of the pressure from her parents and older siblings, Olivia and I decided to end the relationship. We lacked the courage to nurture our beautiful relationship.READ MORE
In our gospel for this second Sunday of Lent, we heard the account of Christ’s transfiguration. The transfiguration is a very significant moment in the salvific work of Christ. It was a source of motivation for Christ and a source of inspiration for future believers. It futures prominently during the second Sunday of Lent to remind believers that though Lent invites us to make sacrifices, it is very much a journey to grace and glory.
There are many reasons the event of the transfiguration took place. But chief amongst all the reasons proposed is the revelation of the divine nature of Christ. And this has some implications for our lives as believers. Today, I will like to reflect on two of those implications.READ MORE
Early last week, at about 6pm Arizona time, and 2am Nigerian time, my kid sister Alice called me on the phone and she sounded very nervous. I thought my mom was having a health crisis. My mom has a high blood pressure condition. But it was not about my mom. It was about my kid brother who has been battling with alcohol and drug addiction. He came to Makurdi to celebrate Christmas with the rest of the family. So we asked him to stay in Makurdi for some time while we plan on helping him get some treatment for his addiction. But that night, he came back drunk and was very violent. It scared me to death. But thank goodness he calmed down and went to bed.READ MORE